If you had to choose between Girls, Game of Thrones, and Homeland, which one would you say is your favorite show? We know, this is tough question. The shows are all equally entertaining, but in very different ways. These and other series have been pitted against each other in the 2013 Arqiva British Academy Television Awards (put out by the British Academy of Film and Television Arts) international category. Up against Danish/Swedish crime drama The Bridge, only one of these four shows can come out the winner. Which one will it be?
See the full list of 2013 BAFTA Television nominees below.
2013 BAFTA TV Nominees:
LEADING ACTOR:Ben Whishaw, Richard II (The Hollow Crown)Derek Jacobi, Last Tango In Halifax Sean Bean, Accused (Tracie’s Story)Toby Jones, The Girl
LEADING ACTRESS:Anne Reid, Last Tango In Halifax Rebecca Hall, Parade’s End Sheridan Smith, Mrs Biggs Sienna Miller, The Girl
SUPPORTING ACTOR: Peter Capaldi, The Hour Stephen Graham, Accused (Tracie’s Story) Harry Lloyd, The Fear Simon Russell Beale, Henry IV Part 2 (The Hollow Crown)
SUPPORTING ACTRESS: Anastasia Hille, The Fear Imelda Staunton, The Girl Olivia Colman, Accused (Mo’s Story) Sarah Lancashire, Last Tango In Halifax
ENTERTAINMENT PERFORMANCE:Alan Carr, Alan Carr: Chatty Man Ant and Dec, I’m a Celebrity… Get Me Out of Here!Graham Norton, The Graham Norton Show Sarah Millican, The Sarah Millican Show
FEMALE PERFORMANCE IN A COMEDY PROGRAM:Jessica Hynes, Twenty Twelve Julia Davis, HunderbyMiranda Hart, Miranda Olivia Colman, Twenty Twelve
MALE PERFORMANCE IN A COMEDY PROGRAM:Greg Davies, Cuckoo Hugh Bonneville, Twenty Twelve PeterCapaldi, The Thick Of It Steve Coogan, Welcome To The Places Of My Life
SINGLE DRAMA :Everyday, Revolution Films/Channel 4 The Girl, Wall to Wall/BBC Two Murder, Touchpaper TV/BBC Two Richard II(Hollow Crown), Neal Street Productions co-production with NBC Universal and WNET Thirteen/BBC Two
MINI-SERIES:Accused, RSJ Films/BBC One Mrs Biggs, ITV Studios/ITV Parade’s End, Mammoth Screen/BBC Two Room At The Top, Great Meadow Productions/BBC Four
DRAMA SERIES:Last Tango In Halifax, Red Production Company/BBC One Ripper Street, Tiger Aspect Productions/BBC One Scott And Bailey, Red Production Company/ITV Silk, BBC Productions/BBC One
SOAP & CONTINUING DRAMA: Coronation Street EastEnders Emmerdale Shameless
INTERNATIONAL:The BridgeGame of ThronesGirlsHomeland
FACTUAL SERIES:24 Hours In A&E, Garden Productions/Channel 4Great Ormond Street, Films of Record/BBC TwoMake Bradford British, Love Productions/Channel 4Our War, BBC Productions/BBC Three
SPECIALIST FACTUAL:All In The Best Possible Taste With Grayson Perry, Seneca Productions/Channel 4The Plane Crash, Dragonfly Productions, MAP TV/Channel 4The Plot To Bring Down Britain’s Planes, Raw TV/Channel 4The Secret History Of Our Streets, Century Films, Halcyons Heart Films/BBC Two
SINGLE DOCUMENTARY:7/7: One Day In London, Minnow Films/BBC TwoBaka: A Cry From The Rainforest, River Films/BBC TwoLucian Freud: Painted Life, Blakeway Productions/BBC TwoNina Conti – A Ventriloquist’s Story: Her Master’s Voice, Nina Conti in association with the BBC/BBC Four
FEATURESBank Of Dave, Finestripe Productions/Channel 4Grand Designs, Boundless/Channel 4The Great British Bake Off, Love Productions/BBC TwoPaul O’Grady: For The Love Of Dogs, Shiver/ITV
REALITY & CONSTRUCTED FACTUAL:The Audience, The Garden Productions/Channel 4I’m a Celebrity… Get Me Out of Here!, ITV Studios/ITVMade In Chelsea, Monkey Kingdom/E4The Young Apprentice, Boundless Productions/BBC One
CURRENT AFFAIRS:Britain’s Hidden Housing Crisis(Panorama Special), Genie Pictures Ltd/BBC OneThe Other Side Of Jimmy Savile(Exposure), ITV Studios/ITVThe Shame Of The Catholic Church(This World), BBC Northern Ireland/BBC TwoWhat Killed Arafat?(Al Jazeera Investigates), Al Jazeera English/Al Jazeera English
NEWS COVERAGE:BBC News At Ten: Syria, BBC News/BBC One & BBC News ChannelChannel 4 News: Battle For Homs, ITN/Channel 4Hillsborough – The Truth At Last(Granada Reports), ITV Granada/ITV
SPORT & LIVE EVENT:The London 2012 Olympics: Super Saturday, BBC Sport/BBC OneThe London 2012 Olympic Opening Ceremony: Isle Of Wonder, Done & Dusted/BBC OneThe London 2012 Paralympic Games, Sunset & Vine, IMG/Channel 4Wimbledon 2012 – Men’s Final, BBC Sport/BBC One
ENTERTAINMENT PROGRAM:Dynamo Magician Impossible, Phil McIntyre Entertainment, Inner Circle Films/WatchThe Graham Norton Show, So Television/BBC OneHave I Got News For You, Hat Trick Productions/BBC OneA League Of Their Own, CPL Productions/Sky One
COMEDY PROGRAM:Cardinal Burns, Left Bank Pictures/E4Mr Stink, BBC Productions in association with Bert Productions/BBC OneThe Revolution Will Be Televised, Hat Trick Productions/BBC ThreeWelcome To The Places Of My Life, Baby Cow/Sky Atlantic
SITUATION COMEDY: Episodes, Hat Trick Productions/BBC TwoHunderby, Baby Cow/Sky Atlantic The Thick Of It, BBC Productions/BBC Two Twenty Twelve, BBC Productions/BBC Two
Follow Lindsey on Twitter @LDiMat.
MORE:BAFTA Nominations 2012 Homeland Teaser: 5 Questions We Need Answered Making A Case for Homeland
In This Means War – a stylish action/rom-com hybrid from director McG – Tom Hardy (The Dark Knight Rises) and Chris Pine (Star Trek) star as CIA operatives whose close friendship is strained by the fires of romantic rivalry. Best pals FDR (Pine) and Tuck (Hardy) are equally accomplished at the spy game but their fortunes diverge dramatically in the dating realm: FDR (so nicknamed for his obvious resemblance to our 32nd president) is a smooth-talking player with an endless string of conquests while Tuck is a straight-laced introvert whose love life has stalled since his divorce. Enter Lauren (Reese Witherspoon) a pretty plucky consumer-products evaluator who piques both their interests in separate unrelated encounters. Tuck meets her via an online-dating site FDR at a video-rental store. (That Lauren is tech-savvy enough to date online but still rents movies in video stores is either a testament to her fascinating mix of contradictions or more likely an example of lazy screenwriting.)
When Tuck and FDR realize they’re pursuing the same girl it sparks their respective competitive natures and they decide to make a friendly game of it. But what begins as a good-natured rivalry swiftly devolves into romantic bloodsport with both men using the vast array of espionage tools at their disposal – from digital surveillance to poison darts – to gain an edge in the battle for Lauren’s affections. If her constitutional rights happen to be violated repeatedly in the process then so be it.
Lauren for her part remains oblivious to the clandestine machinations of her dueling suitors and happily basks in the sudden attention from two gorgeous men. Herein we find the Reese Witherspoon Dilemma: While certainly desirable Lauren is far from the irresistible Helen of Troy type that would inspire the likes of Tuck and FDR to risk their friendship their careers and potential incarceration for. At several points in This Means War I found myself wondering if there were no other peppy blondes in Los Angeles (where the film is primarily set) for these men to pursue. Then again this is a film that wishes us to believe that Tom Hardy would have trouble finding a date so perhaps plausibility is not its strong point.
When Lauren needs advice she looks to her boozy foul-mouthed best friend Trish (Chelsea Handler). Essentially an extension of Handler’s talk-show persona – an acquired taste if there ever was one – Trish’s dialogue consists almost exclusively of filthy one-liners delivered in rapid-fire succession. Handler does have some choice lines – indeed they’re practically the centerpiece of This Means War’s ad campaign – but the film derives the bulk of its humor from the outrageous lengths Tuck and FDR go to sabotage each others’ efforts a raucous game of spy-versus-spy that carries the film long after Handler’s shtick has grown stale.
Business occasionally intrudes upon matters in the guise of Heinrich (Til Schweiger) a Teutonic arms dealer bent on revenge for the death of his brother. The subplot is largely an afterthought existing primarily as a means to provide third-act fireworks – and to allow McGenius an outlet for his ADD-inspired aesthetic proclivities. The film’s action scenes are edited in such a manic quick-cut fashion that they become almost laughably incoherent. In fairness to McG he does stage a rather marvelous sequence in the middle of the film in which Tuck and FDR surreptitiously skulk about Lauren's apartment unaware of each other's presence carefully avoiding detection by Lauren who grooves absentmindedly to Montel Jordan's "This Is How We Do It." The whole scene unfolds in one continuous take – or is at least craftily constructed to appear as such – captured by one very agile steadicam operator.
Whatever his flaws as a director McG is at least smart enough to know how much a witty script and appealing leads can compensate for a film’s structural and logical deficiencies. He proved as much with Charlie’s Angels a film that enjoys a permanent spot on many a critic’s Guilty Pleasures list and does so again with This Means War. The film coasts on the chemistry of its three co-stars and only runs into trouble when the time comes to resolve its romantic competition which by the end has driven its male protagonists to engage in all manner of underhanded and duplicitous activities. This Means War being a commercial film – and likely an expensive one at that – Witherspoon's heroine is mandated to make a choice and McG all but sidesteps the whole thorny matter of Tuck and FDR’s unwavering dishonesty not to mention their craven disregard for her privacy. (They regularly eavesdrop on her activities.) For all their obvious charms the truth is that neither deserves Lauren – or anything other than a lengthy jail sentence for that matter.
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You know, sometimes shit just happens. You take a wildly popular franchise of superheroes and movies, start listening to some really bad ideas and before you know it there are nipples on the Bat Suit, effectively killing 60 years of built up goodwill and great storylines. One bad film is all it can take to bury a great cinematic series. Six feet under. Pushing daisies. DEAD.
But then something amazing happens. A new kid comes around with fresh ideas and a reverence for what made a franchise so good in the first place. Plus, it’s been a few years since the last fiasco so maybe the audience will forgive and forget. All of a sudden you have a great film on your hands that the critics love, the audience will pay big money to see, and voila! The franchise is reborn! Healthier than it has ever been, like it was never dead in the first place! But what does a franchise savior have that previous entries lacked? Read on for the specifics.
X-Men: First Class
Cause of death: X-Men Origins: Wolverine. An unnecessary, thinly plotted and horribly scripted character prequel (Wolverine’s backstory was the focus of the first two movies, dammit!) with shitty CGI? DOA.
Savior: Matthew Vaughn and James McAvoy. Now THIS is a proper prequel. The X-Men are the most prolific comic book stories in existence. There are so many interesting tales to tell you would have to try very hard to mess it up (which totally happened). So how do you take so much potential and turn it into something tangible and real? You take the most interesting mutants, ones with true character histories, and then put them in the hands of a super talented filmmaker with success in the genre. Combine that with one hell of a cast (Jennifer Lawrence! Kevin Bacon!) and, yeah, the X-Men are back.
Also, January Jones' ample cleavage doesn’t hurt.
Cause of death: James Bond didn’t so much die (007 can’t die, remember?) as he became a clown. Sure Pierce Brosnan could spit out witty lines with the best of them, but no one took Denise Richards playing a character named Christmas Jones seriously.
Savior: Martin Campbell and Daniel Craig. When it was first announced that Daniel Craig would be playing England’s most famous spy, the outcry was enormous. He’s blond! He’s tiny! He’s not devilishly handsome enough! Then Casino Royale came out and everyone went “Oh. Never mind.” Sometimes when a franchise dies, in order to bring it back you have to invert everything that caused its demise. So Craig’s Bond doesn’t give a damn whether his martini is shaken or stirred - so what?! And forget the stylized stunts with the hero coming out as well-groomed as ever? Screw that! A sweaty, unpredictable Bond was exactly what the world wanted. Bond came back in a big way, baby.
Cause of Death: Batman and Robin. Nipple suits. Said it once before. Twice is enough.
Savior: Christopher Nolan. Holy shit, this is the textbook example of a franchise being saved. Too much has already been said on how horrible Batman and Robin is and the Oscars, billion dollar box office totals and career defining performances speak well enough for Batman Begins and The Dark Knight. Take away the camp, the tongue-in-cheekiness, the bloated action stars and replace it with grittiness, darkness and (most importantly) a competent filmmaker. Thanks to Nolan, Batman went from being big-screen joke to a serious character on par with one that Shakespeare would’ve come up with. That’s how you do it folks.
Cause of Death: Exhaustion. The original long-run of this classic British show ran from 1963 to 1989. That’s 26 years to fill with original programming and wildly changing tastes of consumers. Add in some executive meddling and a made-for-TV movie that failed on an epic level and it looked like the Doctor finally bit it.
Savior: Russel T. Davies and Steven Moffat. You can’t keep a good man down, but the Doctor? Well, he never really had a chance of staying down anyway. 2005 rolled around and BOOM; Doctor Who was back on the air and better than ever. Everything that brought the series down in the late 80’s was stripped away, leaving the Doctor war-torn but stripped down to his essentials (so no more Time Lords, but plenty of TARDIS and sonic screwdrivers). Throw in some great writing and the Doctor was fully regenerated. However, and this is a unique situation, Doctor Who was practically saved again without dying! It was super saved! Steven Moffat stepped into the head writer’s chair and elevated Who to a degree that few thought possible. He is still running the show and it’s honestly one of the best on television at the moment.
Image via here
Cause of Death: Exhaustion. Sherlock Holmes never really died so much as faded from popularity. Sure, he’s been featured in more movies, TV shows, books, comics and what have you than any other character, but the people just didn’t really care about him when the Millennium rolled around. So he wasn’t dead, but he was malnourished and forgotten, sitting in the corner trying to warm himself with a single match.
Savior: Guy Ritchie and Steven Moffat. Sherlock got a face-lift from two very different sources and suddenly everyone wanted a piece of the famed detective. First, Ritchie gave the uber-awesome Robert Downey Jr the keys to the flat on Baker St. and, really, that’s all you need to know. Sure, he fought in slo-mo, but he was as whip smart as ever and crimes were solved. Ah, but not everyone enjoys Victorian England. Steven Moffat (saving franchises again!) brought Holmes into the present and what do you know, Sherlock fits right in. Of course a good Sherlock series would be smart, but Moffat made his visually stunning and turned Watson into one bad-ass assistant thanks to Martin Freeman. Even after decades of hanging around solving crimes, these two showed that there was plenty of excitement left for the beekeeper.